Add an Inexpensive Halogen Light to Your Music Stand



I wanted to add a light to my music stand---but I didn't want one of the old-fashioned incandescent stand lights, and the new LED lights were either too dim or too pricey.

Gee, I thought, it'd be great if I could use one of those nice bright $10 clip-on halogen reading lights. But they were designed to clip onto horizontal things like bookshelves, not vertical things like music stands.

Time to get out the toolbox...

Step 1: What You'll Need

Tools & supplies:

_ Electric drill
_ 7/32" high-speed drill bit (be sure it can be used on metal---do not use a wood-only bit!)
_ Hammer and one large nail
_ Two small metal corner braces
_ Small adjustable wrench
_ Flat-blade screwdriver
_ Screwdriver for the type of bolts you use (if different)
_ Pencil
_ Short piece of wood board (not shown)
_ A few drops of light machine oil (e.g. 3-in-One)
_ Safety goggles


_ Clip-on halogen light with flexible neck (available at large discount stores)
_ Four 3/16 x 1/2" machine bolts (with flat-bottom heads---don't use slant-headed wood bolts), and to fit each of them:
...... One nut
...... One lock washer
...... Two flat washers

Go ahead and laugh at my corded drill, BTW---I've had offers from several museums. :?)

Step 2: Insert the Braces in the Light Clip

Insert the braces into the light's clip. Imagine you're clipping the light to the braces, and position the braces where you think the light would be most stable.

Step 3: (Inserted Braces)

Here's a closeup of the inserted braces.

Step 4: Mark the Holes

Hold the light against the center top of your music stand so the protruding halves of the braces rest flat against the front of the stand.

If your braces are like mine, they have little reinforcement bumps on their inside corners. Be sure the braces are high enough so the corner bumps are above the stand, so the flat parts can rest right against it.

Use the pencil to mark the four holes in the braces. (This may be easier if a friend helps.)

Step 5: Tap in the Drilling Guides

Lay the stand flat on a workbench or other surface so it doesn't move around. (I used two stools, with the stand's feet hanging over the edge.) Place the wood board under the part of the stand where you marked the holes.

Using the hammer and nail, tap a small indentation in the center of each hole you marked. You must do this to guide the drill bit properly. To avoid bending the stand, be sure the drilling area rests flat against the board.

Step 6: Oil the Bit

Put a drop or two of oil on the end of the drill bit. You must do this when drilling metal, to avoid overheating.

Step 7: Drill the Holes

Put on the safety goggles, then carefully drill the holes. (PLEASE wear the goggles! I've never had a piece of metal in my eye, but I've had a piece of wood, and that was bad enough!)

Add a drop of oil to the bit before you drill each additional hole.

Step 8: Remove Burrs & Discard Shavings

Turn the stand over and use a flat-blade screwdriver to scrape away any burrs (protruding metal).

Now be sure to sweep up and discard all the metal shavings. Don't take a chance that someone will step on them and track them around---there's no telling where they may end up. :?P

Step 9: Attach the Braces

Remove the braces from the light, then attach them to the stand using the bolts, flat and lock washers, and nuts. The next step shows how everything goes on.

Step 10: Hardware Order

Here's how the hardware goes on.

Be sure to include those lock washers, which look like little springs. They press against the other parts to keep them from coming loose.

(I found a nice little assortment of flat and lock washers at my dollar store for---you guessed it---$1.)

Step 11: Done!

Okay---shouldn't you be practicing?

Before I go, please read these brief nags about halogen lights:

_ Never operate the light without the glass shield over the bulb area, which blocks potentially harmful UV radiation. (Don't buy a light without a shield!)

_ Never touch the glass---it gets very hot.

_ Be sure the bulb is completely cool before you try to replace or discard it.

_ Don't leave your stand where it may be tipped over by children or pets.

_ Always turn off or unplug the lamp before removing or replacing the bulb.

_ Never use a bulb of a different type, or higher wattage, than the light specifies.

Oh---and check your hardware every now and then to be sure it's tight. :?)



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